Fishing activity in the area suffered a double whammy last week as the typical Mid-August downturn was abetted by daily temperatures in the 90s, a forecast expected to continue into next week.
Not surprisingly, not only were fish unresponsive but anglers were lethargic as well perhaps enduring post-rally letdown (or relief as the show fits), additional Covid-19 concerns or busying up with late summer activities.
Though action was limited, here’s a look at favorite fishing spots. And area where fishing success was most frequently found.
Angostura Reservoir: A bit of crappie activity near the south marina and among the trees in Horsehead pretty much the extent of fishing excitement on the lake as catches of walleye remain few and far between.
Bear Butte Lake: Crappie action continues with fish in the 11-13-inch range being taken on minnows worked along weed spots. And some northern pike (28-32 inch range) were being caught on chubs.
Belle Fourche Reservoir (Orman): Ambient temps in the 90s plus water level drops due to irrigation has brought fishing to a veritable standstill. The few walleye caught are hooked by boaters as low water has muddied up shorelines.
Black Hills Fly Fishing: The hot spell has slowed the trout bite in the area with the best results presently found at higher elevations.
Curlew Lake: Crappie bite reported on small minnows and jigs.
Deerfield Lake: Some perch being picked up nightcrawlers in 30-40 feet of water.
Horsethief Lake: Good trout action reported in late afternoon hours and trout spinners, powerbait or nightcrawlers the baits of choice.
Pactola Reservoir: Bluegill activity continues at Pactola with some nice 8-10 inch fish being caught in the north and south bays on small jigs and nightcrawlers.
Roubaix Lake: Trout bite reported on powerbait and nightcrawlers.
Sheridan Lake: Early morning anglers were limiting out on rainbows utilizing spoons. And some nice largemouth bass (2-3 pound) were caught as well on top-water lures. Some crappie action reported as well though schools are hard to find as high water temps have sent fish deep with the best chance of success working off the bottom near the mouth of bays.
Lake Oahe: Walleye activity has slowed somewhat as hot weather has sent fish into deeper water (35-40 feet) necessitating patience and electronics effectively used. Nonetheless, limits are being taken with fish averaging in the 16-20-inch range. Bouncer with spinners and crawlers are working best. Some salmon activity near the face of the dam. Fish are deep (75 feet) and the bite can be slow. Spoons and squid advised.
Lake Sharpe: Tougher conditions prevail as hot weather has chased fish deep (25-35 feet of water). Water releases remain high and working the current breaks with bouncer/crawlers or leeches is working best.
Lake Francis Case: Walleye bite remains slow near Chamberlain with better luck reported farther south in Platte area. Bouncer/crawler rigs at depths of 15-25 feet of water are working best.
Dakota Angler & Outfitter, 513 Seventh St., Rapid City; The Rooster, 1441 W. Main St., Rapid City; Wheel in Bait Shop, 18696 Fisherman’s Road, Fruitdale; West Prairie Resort, 28354 182nd, Pierre (605-264-5303), Horsecreek Inn and Campground, 23570, and Angostura State Resort have contributed to this report.
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